Bonk, the headbutting caveman, made his final appearance thus far in 1995's Hudson Soft-produced Super Bonk 2 for the Super NES. This sequel to Super Bonk was released only in Japan and, personally, I feel that's a major shame as its the best Bonk game in the series. The game begins as five new villains appear in Bonk's homeland (which is shown by a map screen for the first time). As Bonk tracks them all down and defeats them, the evil King Drool is released from his prison for one last showdown with our caveman hero.

The main staple attack of the Bonk series, the headbutt, remains the main offensive move in the game. Powerful hunks of meat return which transform Bonk into different forms, such as a thief who tosses smiley faces, a digger that can break blocks, a lizard-man with a lashing tongue, a girly girl, and even (in the later levels) a fire-breathing dragon! The effects of meat wear off if Bonk takes a hit, but there are no sections of the game that rely on meat power to be completed. The "RAGE!" shout from the previous game also returns, but seeing as how the entire game is in Japanese, the shout is written in Japanese text.

The graphics are a step up from Super Bonk, and Bonk himself has been redrawn. He's taller now, his head's a little smaller, and he resembles Nintendo's own hero Mario in stature. The game's overall look is well-balanced, and nothing stands out that shouldn't. Unfortunately, the music is still not very memorable, but the baddies do let out a shout when they are defeated.

The bonus rounds are back and are selected by a spinning wheel. Bonk must headbutt the switch to stop the wheel, and wherever the wheel stops decides which bonus Bonk will play. Bonus rounds include riding a "RAGE!" shout over an expanse, lizard-Bonk using his tongue to eat flies, digger-Bonk breaking blocks to find hidden items, and a Bonkzilla tank that destroys a city for points. As always, these rounds are optional and only serve to increase one's score.

It's a shame that the rest of the world missed out on Super Bonk 2, but all is not lost: the game's ROM is floating around on the Internet and several translation groups have taken a crack at translating the text in the game so players can follow the storyline. If you get the chance and are a fan of the Bonk series, I advise you to seek this game out and give it a whirl. You won't be disappointed.

Playing the game

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